Sent: Wednesday, July 25, 2001 5:28 AM
Subject: And one fine morning she puts on a New York station you know she don't believe what she heard at all

In spite of a lot of really good reasons to avoid Cleveland, I was headed there anyway.  It had been recommended that I go see a blues guy by the name of  Robert Lockwood Jr., who has been around a long time and actually learned guitar from Robert Johnson, and he plays every Wednesday night in Cleveland.  While I was there I thought I would take in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  Got there mid-afternoon and managed to get to the R&RHOF without getting lost.
Immediately after entering that I had my first brush with celebrity!  I was standing reading the description of an exhibit, and Steven Tyler from Aerosmith walked up and stood right next to me reading the same sign.  I did a complete double take, thought about saying something, and figured he gets jerks talking to him everyday. 
I was a little skeptical about the whole thing, but I think they did a good job.  Lots of stuff on the history of R&R and lot's of cool memorabilia.  They were actually having a John Lennon exhibit which made me begin to feel like the ghost of Lennon is following me on this trip.  The exhibit was great, lot's of original lyrics, and a bunch of personal items donated by Yoko Ono, including the eyeglasses he was wearing the night he was shot and the paper bag that the hospital gave her with his effects.  It was very haunting.
That is a picture of the Cleveland skyline from in front of the R&RHOF.
Unfortunately, the other reason I came didn't work out so well.  Found the bar he was playing, but the sound was all screwed up and you could hardly hear him singing.  They tried to fix it, and you could tell the band was frustrated, but it seemed to take a little away from the show.  If I'm ever back in Cleveland I'll have to check him out again.  They finished up early enough that I decided to get on the road and make some progress towards Chicago.  At one point I noticed that the van seemed to be making a bunch of noise when I hit a bump, but it didn't seem too bad....
I stopped at a rest stop to figure out where to sleep for the night, and it turned out there was a Wal-Mart just off the turnpike about 10 miles ahead so I decided to go there.  Just after I got back on the turnpike, every time I hit a bump there was a big racket coming from the right rear wheel well.  After pulling off the turnpike, I turned into the first gas station and checked it out.  The top bolt holding the shock absorber in had fallen out, so every time I hit a bump the shock was bouncing all around inside the wheel well.  Turns out the Wal-mart was about a half a mile away, and a town with some car parts stores was about a mile past that.  The next morning I called my parts guy in New Jersey to get the specs on the bolt, so I wouldn't have to take the other one off in order to buy a new one.  In case you care it is a 12mmX65mm with a 1.5 pitch.  Had to take the tire off to get it back on, but then I was set, and hit the road for Chicago....